Categorized | National News

Gov’t Signs Contract On Japanese Vehicles

The  government of The Bahamas has signed a contract with EAA Company  Limited- a Japanese car inspection company in hopes of eliminating the possibility of radioactive cars being imported to The Bahamas.

According to the Arawak Port Development, in 2016, more than 11,000 passenger and commercial Japanese used cars were imported to The Bahamas.

A year later, this jumped to 18,459, while the numbers fell to 17,191 in 2018, Labour Minister Dion Foulkes anticipates this will again increase this year.

This according to the minister, makes The Bahamas what is  best been described as a dumping ground for unsafe vehicles from japan and quite some time.

“Japan is a country  that has suffered several nuclear accidents, the latest in 2011 in Fukushima and it is imperative that potentially radiated used vehicles are not allowed in The Bahamas.

“This  Pre-inspection of Verification of Conformity program, specifically addresses this risk by including a mandatory requirement for radiation on every inspected vehicle,” the Labour Minister said.   

The government on Monday signed a contract with a Japanese based company –  that is  responsible for inspecting all vehicles for radiation along with other deficiencies. 

This includes things like steering wheel alignment, braking force, exhaust, gas and pipe emissions, cooling and fuel systems, the engine, mileage meter, frame and vehicle body and warning lights.

“The contract will commence with an initial pilot program of one year. After the signing, today there will be a 90-day period to finalize the implementation process and public education.

“The cost of the inspection is $150,000 which will be paid by exporters in Japan,” Mr. Foulkes said.

The  Minister  nor any of the officials from the Department of Labour could confirm or deny if any radioactive cars have been imported to The Bahamas. 

However, Director of the Bureau of Standards Renae Ferguson- Bufford said she is hopeful that this new partnership would eliminate that risk.

“We don’t  have the testing facilities in place for that and we trust and pray that there isn’t,  but because we’ve been a dumping ground for so long and we have not had standards in place to ensure conformance to such standards,  we cannot answer that question. 

“We trust that going forward,  in the next three months or so,  that we will begin to ensure that tests for all of these specifications and that we will not have cars that are radiated entering the country moving forward,” she said.     

EAA is also contracted and approved by the regulatory standards bodies and agencies in Singapore, Mauritius, Tanzania, Zambia and Zanzibar to conduct such used vehicle inspections.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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